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American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Drag Racing Topics:  Leah Pritchett, NHRA Toyota Nationals


Tom Blattler
23 October 2015

Microsoft Word version

For Immediate Release

Can Some “Black Magic” Take Her to NHRA Toyota Nationals Win?

Leah Pritchett Black Magic Leah Pritchett Black Magic
LAS VEGAS -- (Oct. 23, 2015) – Drag racer star Leah Pritchett will have some “Black Magic” ready for the Halloween weekend in Las Vegas.

Pritchett, the 27-year-old California native, comes to the NHRA Toyota Nationals at the “The Strip” at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway hoping that potion of “Black Magic” will take her to victory lane on Sunday, Nov. 1, in the penultimate event in the NHRA Mello Yello drag racing series.

The Dote Racing nitro-burning Top Fuel dragster, with Pritchett at the controls, will sport a crowd-pleasing Black Magic paint scheme for the upcoming NHRA Mello Yello event on the Halloween weekend (Oct. 30 – Nov. 1).

“This new Black Magic livery is awesome and brings another great paint scheme for the 2015 season,” said Pritchett, runner-up at this year’s Southern Nationals. “Black Magic® car care products are a sister company to Gumout, but it’s a great tie-in with Halloween in Las Vegas. I’m hoping a little Black Magic potion gives us a strong performance at ‘The Strip.’”

Black Magic® car care products are among the automotive directory of ITW Global Brands which also manufactures and distributes Gumout and Rain-X brands. Black Magic’s variety of car products include tire, wheel, interior and exterior care.

Pritchett and Dote Racing, led by crew chief Doug Kuch and tuner Rob Flynn, return to “The Strip” for the first time since last year’s impressive semi-finals finish (losing to event winner Spencer Massey) and qualifying in the fifth position in the 16-driver Top Fuel finish.

In addition, “The Strip” has been one of Pritchett’s most popular drag racing venues, having multiple wins as a youngster in the Junior Dragsters and an NHRA national event win in 2011 in the popular ProMod division. Most recently, Leah competed in her first road racing event at nearby Pahrump, Nev., (the Spring Mountain Motorsports Resort) in the Formula Ford category.

“I have been coming to Nevada to race since “The Strip” was first opened back in late 1990s,” said Pritchett, who also gives advice to young female racers trying to follow in her footsteps in the Junior Dragsters. “I was winning races there as a teenager and then won in the ProMods (2011) too. Wow, I would love to win my first Top Fuel national event at Las Vegas too.”

Pritchett’s Top Fuel machine has been a popular dragster with the drag racing fans this year with a variety of different paint schemes for her Gumout Top Fueler. At Bristol, the Dote dragster debuted with an all-gold livery that was voted ‘Best Appearing Car” for the event and, at Indy, the “Lady in Red” red chrome scheme was another “fan favorite.”

“Now we think this new Black Magic livery will be another favorite for the NHRA fans at Las Vegas,” Leah said. “We have taken a little of the red chrome and the black paint to form an outstanding look for the Dote Racing dragster. Since our strong showing last year at ‘The Strip,’ I think we’ll can have a great weekend with the new Black Magic machine. With Halloween coming up, maybe we get that special potion and I can be the ‘Black Magic Woman’ who takes that NHRA ‘Wally’ trophy in victory lane Sunday.”

Pritchett and other Top Fuel racers will begin action at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway “Strip” with qualifying set for 1 p.m. PDT on Friday, Oct. 30, at the NHRA Toyota Nationals. Qualifications are scheduled Friday (Oct. 30 – 1 and 4:30 p.m.) and Saturday (Oct. 31 – 1 and 4:30 p.m.) with final eliminations set for Sunday (Nov. 1) at 11 am PDT.

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Contacts: Tom Blattler, Sport Dimensions, Inc., 317-525-5692
Kinnon Marshall, Sport Dimensions, Inc., 805-701-1216

About Black Magic® Shine: From rims to roof you can polish and protect every inch of your ride with the premium lineup of auto detailing products from Black Magic car care. Black Magic stands behind our promise of creating "the shine that attracts" because every one of our products is rigorously tested by our team of Ph.D's at our Westhollow Technology center. From tire dressings and wheel cleaners to protectants and leather cleaners, Black Magic car care products are backed by a series of tests that prove the science behind the magic. Black Magic® Shine car care products are among the automotive directory of ITW Global Brands which also manufactures and distributes Gumout and Rain-X brands.

About Leah Pritchett: Pritchett grew up in a racing family as Leah’s father, Ron, was a national record holder in land speed competition including at Bonneville. Leah began her racing career on her eighth birthday, driving her sister’s Junior Dragster at Pomona. Since then, Pritchett has recorded numerous titles including the Heritage Funny Car championship. Leah is one of only few pro drivers to hold NHRA licenses in Top Fuel, Funny Car, Heritage Funny Car and ProMod. Pritchett has three NHRA national event victories in the ProMod class. Leah began driving the Dote Racing Top Fuel dragster in 2013. Pritchett reached her first Top Fuel final round last April in the NHRA Southern Nationals. Leah is married to Gary Pritchett, car chief on Steve Torrence’s Top Fuel dragster.

About Dote Racing: The Dote family, now in the third generation of drag racing, began in drag racing in the 1980s and is currently operated by Mike Dote, and his wife, Connie. The Dote Racing team joined the Top Fuel ranks in 2009 and is focused on creating a top caliber effort in 2015 with the Gumout primary involvement. The Dote Racing team, led by team manager Doug Kuch and tuner Rob Flynn, is based in Monroe, Ohio

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